Padres Changes

Posted by on November 13th, 2014  •  0 Comments  • 

New broom sweeps clean, at least that is the history, when new leadership takes over a team.
We are talking San Diego Padres baseball, where at last count, the incoming GM-AJ Preller has made six changes in his front office, just 2-months into the job.
Now it’s time to dive into a roster, beset by a history of injuries, and more recently, failing to hit with any consistency, as season-after-season without a playoff appearance has become their calling card.
The GM meetings, where teams lay groundwork for trades, are in Phoenix, and San Diego seems in the middle of much trade conversation.
First things first, will they spend any money to improve the product at Petco Park?  If the rumors are true, the Padres think they are a player in the Cuban sweepstakes for Yasmany Tomas, the power hitting corner outfielder.  Preller, who has a history as a rogue operator, may try to steal a young player for a shorter contract.  Try a 3-year deal for 51M (17M per season), that guarantees he can go back on the free agent market at age 27.  The Padres have the space to do this.  Just use the Chase Headley-Josh Johnson money paid last year and do it.
Secondly, Andrew Cashner, the cornerstone pitching phenom, who has battled nagging injuries, has not show much interest in signing any type of extension, to buy out arbitration and free agent years.  If he is committed to look elsewhere in 2016, then San Diego can look for a big deal to move him now.  A tremendous talent, and leader, understand he has had 6-different injuries in his Cubs-Padres career.  The rumor will not go away Cashner to the Braves or Red Sox for a truckload of young players.  Atlanta has Jason Heyward as a bargaining chip, and the Red Sox seem to have a strong minor league system.
The third story with the Padres is the international market, and the background Preller, Don Welke and others bring with them in the Latin Market.  It’s more than just Tomas, but now the move to sign the top pitcher from Korea, Kwang Hyun-Kim, a 28-year old lefthander from Team SV.  The Padres posted the highest bid to sign him (2M) and now have 30-days to get a deal done.  Kim is (89-43) in his career, and is compared to Dodgers pitcher Hyun Jin-Ryu, who has been very impressive in a couple years in LA.
The fourth item is the on-going sage of LF-Carlos Quentin, heart-willing, body not.  The chronic knee issues have robbed him of his ability to play in the National League.  When healthy, and that has been seldom, he has hit, even at Petco.  Moving him to the American League, to be someone’s DH, makes sense, but no one wants his 8M-contract.  So Preller will have to pay 5M of the package, but get a decent prospect back, to put Quentin in someone’s AL-batting order.  But as we know here, and most everyone else knows, Q has played just 111-out of 324-games the last two years in San Diego.
Fifth on the list of things to do, will be to remove Evreth Cabrera, the shortstop, in some type of deal.  The Padres have to decided if his off-field arrests are serious, or whether his inability to produce for an entire season statistically, is worth the effort to keep him.
Lots to get done, and it is just starting at Petco Park, with the new leadership’s new philosopshy, “I didn’t make those deals for those players, so I will get rid of the guys I don’t like that they brought in”
The Padres may be a dull team.  This does not promise though to be a dull off-season.
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